The recording feature in Microsoft Teams is great for saving lessons and meetings for later, but I’ve found that the way it works can cause some confusion and concern. So, just how does Teams save and store video, what are the bandwidth and storage requirements, and how can you be sure that your video is private?
How video recording in Teams works
All of the video recording and storage for Teams is offloaded onto Microsoft’s video service, Microsoft Stream. Stream is basically Microsoft’s own version of YouTube which if private to your school.
When you click record in a Microsoft Teams meeting, the video gets streamed directly to Microsoft Stream and is stored there. When you stop recording, a notification appears in the Teams channel or chat that you started the meeting in with a link to the video in Stream.
Once Stream has processed the video, which can take a while depending on the length of the recording, the video is available to watch in Teams and on the Stream website.
This might seem like a complicated process, but it has several advantages:
- All of the video processing is offloaded to an enterprise grade video management platform.
- Because the video is streamed, you don’t have to worry about how much storage you have on your device.
- You don’t have to manually upload the video, it already exists in Stream.
- Once the video is in Stream you can use the editing features to edit the video.
- Stream automatically optimises the video to make it accessible on devices with multiple screen sizes, resolutions, and internet speeds.
Who can access the videos once they’ve been recorded?
This is where some confusion can arise. It can feel like your private video has suddenly disappear off into the ether, accessible by anyone — but that’s not the case!
There are two main ways you can make an audio or video call in Teams:
- Chat Video Call: which you can start in a one-to-one or group chat
- Video Meeting: which you start either within a team or by scheduling a meeting
While these two options work in much the same way, there are some difference which affect who can access, manage and delete recorded videos.
Who can record video meetings?
- Video meetings can only be recorded by a presenter, usually the teacher.
- Chat video calls can be recorded by anyone within the chat, but only one recording can be started at a time.
- If a recording is being made, all present will receive a notification to make them aware.
- Videos are not recorded or stored automatically as part of any technical process.
Who can access my recorded videos?
The table below outlines some of the basic differences between recordings made in chat and team meetings:
|Chat Video Call||Anyone can start a recording, but there can only be one recording at a time.||Only the person who started the recording||Only the person who started the recording||Anyone present in the chat or any member of the team|
|Team Video Meeting||Presenter||Presenter||Presenter||Anyone present in the chat or any member of the team|
In team meetings, currently, everyone who joins is by default a presenter, unless you set your students to be an attendee.
Who can I manage recorded videos?
There are a few rules when it comes to who can manage videos recorded in Teams:
- Recorded videos are automatically stored within Microsoft Stream and can be accessed by visiting http://web.microsoftstream.com.
- Once your video has processed, and is accessible on the Microsoft Stream website, you will receive an email notification.
- Only those who are a member of the team or chat where the recording was made can view the video unless a presenter specifically changes the access permissions in Microsoft Stream.
- Depending on the length of the video, processing can take a long time.
- The Microsoft Stream website displays a list of videos specific to you. This means that a “private” video may appear on your view of the front page, but others cannot see them.
- Microsoft Stream videos are not currently able to be shared publicly.
Microsoft Stream Storage Limits
Video storage limits in Stream depend on your school’s licensing, but luckily for education users, Microsoft are very generous. Some of the standard limits are:
- Total number of videos: 500,000
- Maximum number of channels: 20,000
- Users and groups assigned per video: 1000
- Maximum video size: 50GB
I won’t list them all here, as you can find them on the Microsoft website, but this just gives you an idea of the type of storage your school has.
How much storage space do I have in Microsoft Stream?
But to be more accurate, the amount of storage you have is based on the number of licensed users within your Microsoft 365 tenant.
Every school gets a base amount of storage of 500 GB, plus an additional 0.5 GB per licensed user.
The great thing about this storage, however, is that it is pooled. So, each user doesn’t have an individual quota of 0.5 GB, they get to take advantage of the sum total of the storage of all of your users. If you need more storage than that, you can purchase more, but for most schools this will be more than enough. For example, in my Microsoft tenant, I currently have 751,253 GB of storage available, for an average sized secondary school.
It’s also worth noting that only the original video file size counts against your pooled storage. Transcoded videos, thumbnails, channel poster, subtitle and caption files, do not contribute towards your storage.
How can I find how much storage I have in Microsoft Stream?
- Open your Microsoft Stream page.
- Click the settings cog at the top right of the screen.
- Click Admin settings
- Click Usage details
You can also set an alert here to notify you when you are about to hit your storage limit.